Though a return to the East/West format would’ve excited, well, no one, what does it say about Major League Soccer’s place in the overall scheme of things that a friendly between the league’s stars and a club that finished 13th in last season’s Premiership standings was thought to be a marquee match?

Presumably, Major League Baseball are taking notes and will prepare to send the Kansas City Royals on a barnstorming tour of Japan shortly before the 2006 season.

Lovers of overpriced satellite TV pay channels can look foward to the following friendlies this morning and afternoon :

12: 30pm EST Arsenal v. Porto, Amsterdam Arena (Gol TV)
2:30pm EST AC Milan v. Chelsea, Giants Stadium (Gol TV)
4:00 pm EST Ajax v. Boca Juniors, Amsterdam Arena (tape delay, Gol TV)

Setanta’s US satellite channel will carry the 2nd leg of Liverpool’s 2nd qualifying round Champions League match against Kaunas this Tuesday at 2:30pm EST.